Tag Archives: Lipodystrophy

Adipocyte-Specific Deficiency of De Novo Sphingolipid Biosynthesis Leads to Lipodystrophy and Insulin Resistance

Sphingolipids have been implicated in the etiology of chronic metabolic diseases. Here, we investigated whether sphingolipid biosynthesis is associated with the development of adipose tissues and metabolic diseases. SPTLC2, a subunit of serine palmitoyltransferase, was transcriptionally upregulated in the adipose tissues of obese mice and in differentiating adipocytes. Adipocyte-specific SPTLC2-deficient (aSPTLC2 KO) mice had markedly reduced adipose tissue mass. Fatty acids that were destined for the adipose tissue were instead shunted to liver and caused hepatosteatosis. This impaired fat distribution caused systemic insulin resistance and hyperglycemia, indicating severe lipodystrophy. Mechanistically, sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) was reduced in the adipose tissues of aSPTLC2 KO mice, and this inhibited adipocyte proliferation and differentiation via the downregulation of S1P receptor 1 and decreased activity of the peroxisome proliferator–activator receptor . In addition, downregulation of SREBP (sterol regulatory element–binding protein)-1c prevented adipogenesis of aSPTLC2 KO adipocytes. Collectively, our observations suggest that the tight regulation of de novo sphingolipid biosynthesis and S1P signaling plays an important role in adipogenesis and hepatosteatosis.

Diabetes Journal current issue





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Leptin Substitution in Patients With Lipodystrophy: Neural Correlates for Long-term Success in the Normalization of Eating Behavior

Lipodystrophy (LD) is a rare disease with a paucity of subcutaneous adipocytes and leptin deficiency. Patients often develop severe diabetes and, additionally, show a disturbed eating behavior with reduced satiety. The disturbed eating behavior can be restored by substitution with the leptin analog metreleptin. Long-term effects of metreleptin on resting state brain connectivity in treatment-naive patients with LD have not been assessed. In this study, resting state functional MRI scans and extensive behavioral testing assessing changes in hunger/satiety regulation were performed during the first 52 weeks of metreleptin treatment in nine patients with LD. Resting state connectivity significantly increased over the course of metreleptin treatment in three brain areas (i.e., hypothalamus, insula/superior temporal gyrus, medial prefrontal cortex). Behavioral tests demonstrated that perceived hunger, importance of eating, eating frequencies, and liking ratings of food pictures significantly decreased during metreleptin therapy. Taken together, leptin substitution was accompanied by long-term changes of hedonic and homeostatic central nervous networks regulating eating behavior as well as decreased hunger feelings and diminished incentive value of food. Future studies need to assess whether metreleptin treatment in LD restores physiological processes important for the development of satiety.

Diabetes Journal current issue





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